ƒ: In addition to the regular Buyer’s premium, a commission of 5.5%
inclusive of VAT of the hammer price will be charged to the buyer.
It will be refunded to the Buyer upon proof of export of the lot
outside the European Union within the legal time limit.
(Please refer to section VAT refunds)
Post Lot Text
The tradition of figure carving has been documented as early as the 17th century by Spanish missionaries (Blair and Robertson, The Philippine Islands: 1493-1898. 5 volumes. Cleveland, Ohio, 1903-1909 in Ellis et al (eds.) The People and Art of the Philippines, 1981, p. 190). We can extrapolate, therefore, that the bulul carving tradition even predates these early, though scant, records. Dating of some of the remarkable bulul figures exhibited and published in Philippines: Archipels des échanges (Monbrison and Alvina (eds), Paris, Musée du Quai Branly, 2013) demonstrate the veracity of the supposed antiquity of this figurative carving tradition.
According to Marian Pastor Roces (op. cit., p. 215), the Ifugao aesthetics, are governed by a collective thought system, and thereby inextricably linked to their landscaping practices – all surrounding the production of the central food source: rice. In a tradition dating from over 4,000 years, in northern Luzon, the Ifugao have made their mark on the magnificent landscape of the Cordillera Central, sculpting the hillsides into their famous rice terraces, the technical prowess of which fades before the poignant beauty of their gently rolling lineations. The essential role of rice cultivation for the Ifugao is reflected in the rituals governing their cultural and religious life, and in the emphasis placed on the bulul, which are an "artistic form of expression intended to figure the divine in correlation with rice, its culture and its growers” (ibid.).
This work, while conforming to the aesthetic collective aesthetic standards, maintains an individual power and sensitivity – particularly in the integrity of the facial expression with the inlaid eyes and mouth still intact. It compares closely to another formerly in the collection of Hubert Goldet (see op. cit., figure 154).